What happened to Ricky?

Ricky Davis has been a bit of a mystery this season, averaging career lows pretty much across the board and shooting a frigid 27 percent. Wednesday he provided a glimpse of what might be wrong.

Apparently the tendinitis in his left knee has been flaring up a lot this season, making it painful to jump, shoot and cut. He’s tried to play through it because the team needed him, and he knew he had an opportunity to play a lot in the early going. Unfortunately the pain, he said Wednesday, has gotten to be too much and he’s going to shut it down for a little while to try and get things back in order.

“It’s awful. We’re probably looking at about two weeks,” Davis said, when asked how much time he’d miss. “I haven’t really put a time on it yet. It was just a lot of pain going on.’

Why is he shutting it down now?

“I feel like I’m out there like 60 percent,” he said. “I’m kind of hurting the team more than anything. I decided to sit down and get it right. I thought I could play through it a little bit. I’d rather get it right.”

Heavy news day

OK, bullet points because I’ve got an early deadline with the holiday:

–Kim Hughes will coach tonight. Mike Dunleavy did not make it back from Dallas, where he was attending his father in laws funeral. He will rejoin the team Friday.

–Brian Skinner and Jason Hart have the flu and are not even here tonight.

–Ricky Davis is contemplating shutting it down for two weeks to rest his painful left knee. He says that it’s been affecting his play to the point that he’s “hurting the team more than anything”

–Chris Kaman is deciding whether he can play tonight. His left arch has flared up and been causing him severe discomfort of late. He plans to get a cortisone shot soon.

–Zach Randolph would start if Kaman is unable to play tonight.

Meet Mardy!

With all the drama surrounding the finalities of the Clippers big trade for Zach Randolph, the other guy included in the deal, guard Mardy Collins, has been largely ignored.

Collins was a bit of a throw-in to the deal, but the Clips are happy to have him. He’s a 6-6 guard with a great basketball pedigree though a lot of people just know him as the guy who started the fight with the Denver Nuggets back in December of 2006.

I called up a couple reporters who dealt with Collins back in New York who insisted that Mardy is actually a really good guy, and the brawl was very out of character for him. So far that description has been pretty accurate from what I’ve seen out of Mardy.

He struck me as a real polite, thoughtful guy. His inclusion in the deal takes him away from the East Coast for the first time in his life really. Collins went to Simon Gratz High in Philadelphia, the same high school as Aaron McKie and Rasheed Wallace attended. He also went to Temple, so the comparisons to McKie are pretty much cemented into his biography by now.

He’s generally regarded as a smart basketball player who plays some pretty good defense. He said today that he was excited about playing in the Clippers half-court oriented offense, which is more like the system he excelled in, in college.

“I think I’ve got most of the plays down,” Collins said after the Clippers practiced on Tuesday. “There’s a lot of combinations in them so it’s kind of confusing, but I should be alright.

“There are a lot of plays, but they all make sense and go together. It’s the kind of system I’ve worked in before, with half-court sets, so it definitely helps.

“Once I get out there and don’t have to think about what i’m doing, that’s when I think everything will feel a little better.”

With Ricky Davis doubtful for Wednesday’s game against the Nuggets with knee pain, don’t be surprised to see Collins see some minutes tommorrow.

“For Mardy it depends on matchups,” assistant coach Kim Hughes said Tuesday when asked how much Collins might play Wednesday. “I think he has the ability to guard Carmelo. … And I kind of like the fact that he got into it with Melo a year ago.”

Ricky Davis doubtful for Wednesday’s game

I forgot to mention that shooting guard Ricky Davis is doubtful for tommorrow’s game with pain in his left knee. He did not practice Tuesday. A determination on his status will be made tommorrow.

If Davis is unavailable, rookie Eric Gordon would start the game. Though I have to say, I’m pretty sure that even if Davis is available, Gordon would be starting after the performance he had last night against New Orleans.

Other rumors

A lot of rumors have been flying around about the Clippers and Charlotte talking about trades for Chris Kaman. Every time another one hits the internet, I call up four or five people who generally know what’s going on, and am told the same thing: Kaman isn’t being traded.

I’m not the only one making these calls of course. Agents and front office types are too, just seeing if there is anything to them. Any one of these calls could result in movement in the situation, which is sort of what happened last week when talks with the Knicks stalled over the Knicks’ request for Marcus Camby and draft picks, then re-opened later in the week after the Knicks came back and said they’d do the deal for Mobley and Thomas.

I can only go off of what people tell me, but every time I ask I’m told that nothing substantive is happening with Kaman right now.